How Speech Therapy Works

Embarking on speech therapy can be a transformative journey for those experiencing speech, language, voice, or swallowing disorders. Speech therapy encompasses a variety of techniques and approaches, each tailored to meet the unique needs of the individual. Here’s an insight into how speech therapy can benefit different groups and address specific conditions.

How Speech Therapy Helps Toddlers

For toddlers, the focus of speech therapy is often on nurturing language development through engaging and playful activities. These may include interactive games, storytelling with picture books, and the use of toys that encourage expressive communication. Therapists also equip parents with effective strategies to facilitate language growth at home, transforming daily routines into language enrichment opportunities.

How Speech Therapy Helps Preschoolers

Preschoolers receive speech therapy aimed at enhancing readiness for school. This includes activities that improve articulation, enrich vocabulary, and bolster social communication skills. A key component is also the development of pre-literacy skills, such as recognizing rhymes and understanding the connection between sounds and letters, essential for reading and writing success.

How Speech Therapy Helps School-aged Children

For children in school, speech therapy addresses challenges that may affect academic achievement and social interaction. This can involve articulation therapy, language exercises to improve understanding and expression, and strategies to improve fluency and vocal quality. Speech therapists may also provide specialized support for literacy, aiding children with reading and writing challenges.

How Speech Therapy Helps Individuals with Autism

Speech therapy plays a vital role in supporting individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), focusing on both verbal and non-verbal communication. This includes teaching gestures, eye contact, and social communication skills such as conversation turn-taking and recognizing social cues. Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) systems may also be introduced, ranging from simple picture boards to advanced electronic devices, to support communication.

How Speech Therapy Sessions Are Conducted

Speech therapy is highly customized, with sessions designed around the individual’s specific needs. Therapy may involve one-on-one sessions, group interactions to practice social skills, articulation exercises, language-based activities, role-playing scenarios, or the utilization of AAC technology.

How Speech Therapy Supports Individuals Who Stutter

For those who stutter, speech therapy offers strategies to manage fluency, reduce speech tension, and foster positive attitudes towards communication. Techniques may include practicing ‘easy onset’ of speech, ‘slow rate’ to reduce speech speed, and ‘light contacts’ to lessen tension in articulation.

At Sherwood Park Speech Therapy, we are committed to delivering personalized, evidence-based care to support the communication goals of our clients. If you or someone you care for is seeking speech therapy, we’re here to help guide you through every step of this journey.


American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. (n.d.). Stuttering (Practice Portal).

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. (n.d.). Autism (Practice Portal).